Since 1985, New Jersey residents affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia have trusted the Alzheimer’s New Jersey charity in providing care and support for their families and in advancing research towards a cure. They provide a helpline for anyone needing support, it is: 888-280-6055. You can help them in this needful cause with a car donation through Donate-a-car. Call today at 1-800-237-5714.
November is National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month. There are over 5.5 million individuals in this country who have Alzheimer’s and every 66 seconds someone in America develops this disease. But numbers don’t tell the story of what it’s like to have a loved one suffer from Alzheimer’s, which slowly takes away a loved one’s ability to remember, communicate and enjoy personal independence.
Here are a few things to remember if you have a loved one with Alzheimer’s:
- Be Educated. Learn as much as you can about this disease and how it progresses. This can help you empathize with your loved one.
- Keep Routines and Schedules Predictable. As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, it is vital to have set schedules and routines to help eliminate frustration and confusion in your loved one.
- Ensure Good Nutrition. Studies have shown that eating a healthy diet with fruits and vegetables and limiting refined sugars can help behavioral issues in Alzheimer’s patients.
- Keep a Current List of Medications. Maintain a list of all the medications and dosages of your loved one and update it as it changes. This will help you be able to accurately share this information with caregivers and healthcare workers.
- Daily Exercise. Make time each day for physical exercise for your loved one. It’s important to focus on the health of the body too, and not just the mind.
- Have Fun. Plan trips to the park, museum or even the zoo for your loved one to enjoy. They can still have fun.
- Use Methods of Communication. There are several methods you can access to reach your loved one. Music, reading and art are some ways you can connect, especially when verbal expression is no longer effective. A simple touch on their arm can convey to them that they are loved.
- Take Care of Yourself. Be careful to not exert yourself to the point of burnout. Make sure you are getting enough sleep and eating healthy. You may want to join with a support group or spend time with family and friends to “fill up” your own gas tank.